Acne is currently the most common skin condition in America. It affects 50 million people in the United States each year, with 80 percent of those affected falling between the ages of 12 and 24. However, it can strike at any age, regardless of gender or race.
The scars left by acne don’t just lie on the surface of the skin; they can leave emotional scars as well–self-esteem and confidence issues that last well into adulthood.
Therefore, understanding acne’s causes within the body, as well as exterior contributing factors that can lead to acne, can help you in treating it properly.
Simply put, sebum is your body’s natural oils, but it can also be Enemy #1 when it comes to acne.The overproduction of this oil means trouble.
But getting control of your skin’s natural oils is the first step in fighting those red, bumpy intruders. Ways to Reduce the Effects of Sebum on Acne
Get Control of Your Acne Naturally
Currently, there is no cure for acne. However, there are a number of things you can do to lessen your chances of experiencing an acne flare-up and to take good care of your skin, overall.
Use an oil-free face wash
An oil-free face wash is helpful in reducing the risk of acne because it does not add to the oils that already exist on your face.
CBDMEDIC™ Foaming Facial Cleanser is one such oil-free face wash. The combination of essential oils including lavender oil, peppermint oil, tea tree oil, jojoba seed oil, and THC-free CBD hemp extract will keep your skin feeling refreshed, healthy, and clean. [Note: By oil-free, we mean heavy oils like petroleum-based oils and waxes].
Avoid prolonged sun exposure
Too much time spent out in the sun can cause inflammation, which we’ve already established can kick-start an acne outbreak. Staying out of the sun can reduce the amount of sweat that builds upon the skin, as well as reduce your exposure to environmental irritants, like sunscreen, that can exacerbate acne.
If you know you’re going to be out in the sun for a prolonged period of time, look for a noncomedogenic, hypoallergenic sunscreen made from all-natural, organic ingredients. Wear a hat and UV protected clothing to keep the sun’s rays from touching your skin.
The body responds to stress by releasing cortisol, which can cause a hormonal imbalance, not just within the body, but on the surface of the skin. Studies have proven that there is a direct correlation between stress and acne.
Types of physical and emotional stress that can influence acne include:
- poor sleep habits
- work and/or family stress
To lessen your chances of getting acne from stress, try the following:
- stay hydrated
- get 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night
- eat a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods like berries, lean protein, leafy greens, seeds,nuts, and beans
- exercise 3 to 5 times a week for 30 minutes each time you workout
- take a yoga class
Picking, scratching, and even touching your face can cause acne. All you’re doing is adding dirt and other substances from your hand onto your face. Whether you struggle with acne or not, resist the urge to touch your face.
The Science of Your Acne
What is Sebum?
Sebum is an oily substance emitted from the sebaceous gland and it has a range of important functions, including:
- maintaining elasticity in the skin
- protecting it from toxins and infections
- keeping it moisturized
- ensuring the skin stays waterproof
When there is the presence of too much sebum, the skin can become oily.
When that sebum and oil combines with dirt and bacteria, the sebum turns into a glue-like substance that seals shut the pore of the skin. This becomes a veritable breeding ground for bacteria, which forces the immune system to initiate its inflammatory response, causing red, swollen, pustules known as pimples to form in response to the body trying to fight the infection.
Sebum, however, isn’t the only thing that rests on the surface of your skin. The oil that settles there is comprised of sebum, sweat, fat-like compounds called lipids, and environmental irritants like:
- air pollution
- water pollution
- chemical irritants in household cleaners and beauty products
- extreme heat or cold
- pet dander
- food allergies
Sebaceous Glands and Your Skin
You have up to 900 sebaceous glands on your face right now. Don’t panic — that’s not a bad thing. The sebaceous glands, tiny glands embedded in the skin that help protect the body from outside invaders like physical and environmental toxins, play a large role in inflammation and the immune response within the body, which is a good thing.
When an infection occurs, the body’s immune response kicks in, which causes inflammation as a means to fight the infection. When the body is stuck in an inflammatory state or it cannot fight infection fast enough, as is the case when sebum seals a skin pore, inflammation can get out of control.
One way that this manifests is through acne.
In teenagers, an overactive sebaceous gland can be to blame for their acne. During puberty, there is a surge of hormones, namely insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1), which can increase the production of sebum. The sebum also takes on a thicker consistency, making it easier to clog pores.
As mentioned previous, adults are not immune to acquiring acne. In fact, cases of adult-onset acne have multiplied in recent years, affecting more women (85%) than men (15%).This is largely due to an imbalance in hormone levels during pregnancy, menopause, and around the time of menstruation.
For the older set, adult-onset acne can also be caused by:
- hair and skincare products
- clogged pores
- environmental irritants
- unhealthy lifestyle choices like poor sleep and poor diet
Clear Your Skin Naturally
No matter how well you take care of your skin, breakouts are sometimes inevitable.
When choosing a topical to help heal your acne, look for one with all-natural ingredients intended to soothe and cool the skin like CBDMEDIC’s Acne Treatment Medicated Cream. Salicylic acid, derived from willow trees (that same bark that sweat lodges have been built from for Native American and other indigenous ceremonies), dries up acne blemishes and helps prevent new blackheads and pimples from forming with the added assistance from bentonite clay, an age-old remedy for the skin. Meanwhile, the addition of eucalyptus oil, THC-free CBD hemp oil, jojoba seed oil, peppermint oil, and tea tree oil soothe the skin and promote a healthy complexion.
Disclaimer: This information is for educational purposes only. It has not been approved by the FDA to diagnose, treat, prevent, cure, or mitigate any diseases or conditions. We use CBD in our products for cosmetic purposes only.